Services for Adults

Assessment, Therapy, and Support

The services I provide in assessment, therapy, and support are designed with specific goals in mind that enable you to resolve the presenting problems that brought you to therapy, address these issues in proactive ways, and ultimately achieve success and happiness.

What will we do in the first session?

The first session lasts 75 minutes and enables us to have sufficient time to discuss reasons why you have come to see me, and what I can do for you. During this meeting, I will interview you so that I can diagnose the presenting problem. Following this session, I ask you to take home and fill out a battery of tests including the Personal Problems Checklist, Health Problems Checklist, Incomplete Sentences Blank, Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI), Eating Disorder Inventory (if applicable), an assessment of character strengths, and other self-report inventories. Nearly all of these assessment tools are available only to licensed clinical psychologists, and are provided at no additional cost to you.

What do we learn from the assessment?

The results of testing, including graphs, are reviewed in subsequent meetings, and form the basis for understanding the presenting problems, formulating treatment goals and planning subsequent sessions. For example, the visual graph from the MMPI test identifies elevations in areas including depression, anxiety, need for attention, somatic concerns, reality testing, interpersonal trust, energy level, and relative tendency toward introversion or extraversion. The Eating Disorder Inventory, given to clients who express concerns about eating and/or body image, identifies problems in the following areas: preoccupation with restrictive dieting, uncontrollable overeating, concern about overall shape, global measures of eating and weight concerns, low self esteem, emotional emptiness, interpersonal insecurity, lack of trust in relationships, tendency towards mood instability, perfectionism, self sacrifice, and maturity fears.

Character strengths assessments and interest tests such as the Strong Interest Inventory may be given in order to help me identify particular strengths, interests, and passions, and to begin a dialog about ways to recognize and build on core strengths, talents and abilities. This "positive psychology" approach is also applied to challenges such as dealing with depression, anxiety, or an eating disorder.

How does testing provide a basis for establishing treatment goals?

Awareness of strengths and problem areas identified in the assessment phase of treatment forms a basis for answering questions such as: How can you best manage your problems and concerns? What steps can you take to be successful and happy in relationships with others including friends, co-workers, and family members? What can you do to find success and happiness at home, and in your job, career, and place in society?

What are typical treatment goals, and what techniques do you use?

The general goals of this assessment, treatment and support model include problem solving, enhancing self esteem and competence, identity and self determination, and connections with others. Depending on the presenting problems and diagnoses, I use particular cognitive, behavioral and insight-oriented techniques to address your particular presenting problems.

Our discussions may focus on self-control and self-regulation; problem solving; vigilance in areas of nutrition, diet, body image, alcohol use, exercise, and sleep; and stress management techniques. Social relationships are discussed within the framework of understanding how particular self-views, views of others, cognitive beliefs, perceptions of threat and vulnerabilities, strategies, and affect have an impact on the way in which people interact with one another.

Coping, decision-making, and interpersonal skills are reinforced in order to

  • find constructive ways to deal with conflict
  • identify issues with others involving power and limit-setting
  • recognize when you can and cannot exert control in various situations
  • reduce self defeating behaviors
  • enhance connections with others that build respect, warmth and support.

The "positive psychology" approach enables you to use your unique talents, abilities, character strengths, and the insight gained through therapy sessions to resolve problems, and achieve greater fulfillment and happiness in life.